POLYTECHNIC UNIVERSITY OF CARTAGENA – ACTIVITIES & CAPACITIES
The Universidad Politécnica de Cartagena (UPCT, www.upct.es) is a higher education public institution in Spain, with long experience (since the end of the XIX century) in teaching technical studies. The University includes a total of 8 Colleges in charge of the organisation of 24 higher (Bachelor and Masters) degrees on Engineering, Business and Architecture. It currently organizes 15 Master Programmes and 13 Doctorate Programmes.
UPCT has 620 staff members involved in research and teaching activities, with total revenue in R&D amounting K€ 78.326 during 2012. UPCT has demonstrated competence and experience in managing R+D+i projects as detailed in the most well known Universities ranking at Spain. In this report, UPCT is one of the most five successful universities in obtaining funds for its innovation and research activities.
2. CLOUD INCUBATOR HUB
UPCT has experience a relevant in the incubation/acceleration of start-ups through the Cloud Incubator HUB (http://cincubator.com). The Cloud Incubator HUB was launched in 2011 by the Universidad Politécnica de Cartagena to support entrepreneurs wanting to start mobile technology-focused businesses. Our current angel network has invested over K€ 675 in our startups.
It organises biannually two incubation programmes (Pre-Incubation and Acceleration Programmes) in its facilities at Fuente Álamo Technology Park (Murcia, Spain). Cloud Incubator HUB was created by researchers of the Higher Technical School of Telecommunications Engineering of the UPCT in 2011, which currently brings together over 75 entrepreneurs, teachers and researchers in the fields of IT languages and systems, telematics engineering, electronic technology and automatic control systems. The average age of the Cloud Incubator staff is 40, albeit around fifteen of these researchers have over 20 years’ research experience and come from Spain’s top universities, making up an excellent combination of youth and experience. To carry out its mission Cloud Incubator HUB counts with experts organized around five areas of specialized activity applied in a wide range of topics (art, education, research, industry, entertainment, tourism, etc.): (1) telematics engineering; (2) software engineering and IT systems; (3) electronics engineering; and (4) business innovation and applications.
In this way staff members have created a work ecosystem that provides a natural habitat for the pre-incubation and acceleration of start-ups, with a high level of technological input. The members of Cloud Incubator HUB have also participated in more than a hundred R+D+i Projects, some of them funded by the EU, namely: LARLASC (Large Area Laser Surface Clearing, Eureka E! 2732 EULASNET), CLAWAR (Climbing And Walking Robots, G1RT-CT-2002-050801998/2001, EU-5FP), EFTCoR (Environmental Friendly and Cost-effective Technology for Coating Removal, G3RD-CT-2002-00794, EU-6FP), NoE: e-Photon/One+ (Optical Networks: Towards Bandwidth Manageability and Cost Efficiency, FP6-IST-027497), NoE: BONE (Building the Future Optical Network in Europe, FP7-ICT-216863), and MoTeCo (European Partnership for Development in Mobile Technology Competence, 08-LdV/TOI/02068/024). The UPCT also contributes to several EU COST Actions: 2100 Pervasive Mobile & Ambient Wireless Communications, IC1004/2 Cooperative Radio Communications for Green Smart Environments, IC905 TERRA Techno-economic regulatory framework for radio spectrum Access for cognitive radio/software defined radio, IC906 IntelliCIS Intelligent Monitoring, Control and Security of Critical Infrastructure Systems.
The Cloud Incubator HUB has its facilities in Fuente Álamo Technology Park and in the city of Cartagena. The Fuente Álamo Technology Park is situated in the southeast of the Region of Murcia (pop. 1,500,000), between the cities of Murcia (pop. 500,000) and Cartagena (pop. 200,000), a developing area of great strategic value that is fully integrated in the Mediterranean Basin and the Iberian Peninsula.
Cloud Incubator HUB is situated in the southeast of the Region of Murcia.
Fuente Álamo Technology Park.
Cloud Incubator HUB offers excellent facilities for entrepreneurs to mature their startups. They are placed inside the CEDIT building of the UPCT. The HUB has four fully equipped work areas, a laboratory for the development of electronic devices and an intelligent vehicle lab. In total, more than 2.000 square metres is available for the incubation of technology projects.
One of the goals of Cloud Incubator HUB is the incubation of startups related to Smart Cities and the Internet of Things. To this end, a wireless network is available throughout the Fuente Álamo Technology Park, as well as a private road where we can test our intelligent vehicles and the wireless sensor networks deployed in the park. All this makes our facilities an excellent place to develop applications for Smart Cities and Intelligent Vehicles.
Four rooms of 50 m2 each, fully equipped with ICT equipment (iMACs, PCs, tablets, smartphones, etc), printers, Internet, etc.
A laboratory for the design, prototyping, manufacture and testing of consumer electronic devices (e.g. gadgets for smartphones).
A laboratory for the design, prototyping, manufacture and testing of consumer electronic devices (e.g. gadgets for smartphones).
A wireless sensor network of 30 complex nodes deployed in the Fuente Álamo Technology Park for the development and testing of products related to Smart Cities and the Internet of Things.
Laboratory for the manufacturing of gadgets for mobile devices.
Up to 60 wireless sensors nodes for testing Internet of Things application in many fields (smart cities, precision agriculture, industrial facilities, etc.)
In addition to these facilities, the HUB offers all the other services provided by the CEDIT building of the Universidad Politécnica de Cartagena: conference and meeting rooms, classrooms for training courses, showers, rest areas, kitchen and dining room.
2.2 Entrepreneurial Ecosystem
Cloud Incubator HUB provides an environment for startups that maximizes the likelihood of business success by providing an Acceleration Programme that includes a suite of services to overcome the barriers in the way of creating startups. These services include: physical space and technological facilities in the Technology Park of Fuente Álamo, legal support for starting economic activity; intensive programme of acceleration, business and technological training, mentoring & networking, access to successful entrepreneurs as mentors (Alumni), and access to investment capital (BAL Partners investor group).
One of the first problems of the startups is to choose the right time to be constituted as a legal entity. An early constitution involves the disbursement of money that could be invested on more productive activities. A late constitution can stop the boot process. In any case, the constitution of the startup, as a legal entity, is necessary and mandatory to bill and to produce incomes, and thus to test the startup feasibility, albeit on a small scale.
For solving this problem, Cloud Incubator HUB founded a non-profit association in which entrepreneurs and startups can be associated. With this legal instrument, startups can bill the activities that they carried out from day one. The obtained incomes reverse to the association, and when the startup desires (usually after check its feasibility) it can be constituted as a company and activities and IPR are transferred from the association to the company.
The Startup Acceleration Program, driven by Cloud Incubator HUB, is intended to create a diversified portfolio of forward-looking technology-based companies. It consists of an intensive six-month program and is conducted once a year (autumn semesters). Accelerated technological projects are selected through a rigorous process that evaluates both the idea and the team behind it. The acceleration process is directed by a team of tutors and mentors who help and advise entrepreneurs in different areas of activity (finance, entrepreneurship, technology, business, legal, marketing, etc.). The semester ends with a Demo Day for the investment and business community, in which entrepreneurs present their ideas/prototypes to attract the funding necessary to put the project’s business plan into operation.
Through its investment vehicles, the organization takes a minority stake in the project (15-20%) in return for an injection of up to €25,000 seed capital to cover initial expenses, facilities, the mentoring and tutoring program and other additional services offered by the program partners.
During the intensive program of acceleration, Cloud Incubator HUB offers regular technology training courses in the field of ICT. These courses are organized in conjunction with the two Business Innovation Centres of the Region of Murcia, CEEIC (http://www.ceeic.com) and CEEIM (http://ceeim.com). The main training courses are listed below:
- Generating Business Ideas. In this workshop guidelines to identify potential business ideas are shown. Teach to see reality, identify potential market niches, to discover new types of needs, dealing with customers, diversify technology businesses, starting business models, learning to develop a Lean Canvas. It is a vital workshop for entrepreneurs.
- Entrepreneur 2.0. How to put your business in the cloud. The entrepreneur learns all the necessary for hosting and managing its business in the cloud.
- Android programming. Destined to acquire the basic skills needed to become a developer of apps for Android devices.
- iOS programming. Destined to acquire the basic skills needed to become a developer of apps for iOS devices.
- Internet of Things with Arduino. To design and develop wireless electronic products (gadgets) for smartphones and Internet of Things based on the Arduino open hardware platform.
- Internet of Things with Raspberry Pi. Entrepreneurs learn to design and program wireless electronics (gadgets), based on Raspberry Pi platform controlled by smart mobile devices, and through software components that provide services to and from the cloud.
- E-Commerce. Entrepreneurs complete the training with a functional electronic shop to start developing its ecommerce business.
- Entrepreneurs learn to develop games in 2D and upload on different markets Apple Store, Google Store.
Cloud Incubator HUB recognizes the importance of networking for entrepreneurs to establish a professional network for business. To do this, we offer different resources, both off-line and on-line.
On the last Thursday of each month, we organise the Cloud Afterhours. It becomes the most important space for networking, entrepreneurship and research on ICT in the Region of Murcia. Cloud is a forum that adds knowledge and co-creation. Knowledge is input by experts in various disciplines that explore the world of entrepreneurship in IT from different perspectives, and co-creation is a result of the connection of ideas and networking—both key elements for Cloud Afterhours.
Mentors, entrepreneurs, investors, local authorities and students are the main participants in these conferences, which are held throughout the Region of Murcia. The aim is to proactively present this initiative to society and promote the culture of entrepreneurship.
Regarding to off-line resources, we are likewise present in the most common social networks:
- Twitter (@CincubatorHUB)
- Linkedin (http://www.linkedin.com/company/cloud-incubator-hub)
- Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/CloudIncubatorHUB)
We also have a communication department that is responsible for broadcasting our activities in spoken and written media, and a mailing list for disseminating news of interest to our entrepreneurs. Entrepreneurs can use such resources to transmit and exchange their personal branding information, ideas and business opportunities.
The Cloud Incubator HUB through Two Up Seed Capital and Startup Factory investor groups supports high-tech start-up companies as they near commercial viability by providing access to early-stage capital, accelerating company development. These funds are designed to support this critical stage in the development lifecycle to prepare companies for follow-on private investment. Companies developing technologies in mobile technologies are eligible for these funds through the Cloud Incubator HUB. The Pre-Seed fund loan is up to €60,000. Eligible startups have less than €1 million in revenues and less than €1 million in third party funding.
Eligible companies will need to be past the concept development and analysis phase developed during the Intensive Programme.
The aim of the innovation action STARTUP SCALEUP is to build a European ecosystem around four consolidated entrepreneurial ecosystems in Spain (CLOUD), the Netherlands (CROSS), Lithuania (OCC) and Ireland (RYAN), together with the largest social network for Startups in the European Union (F6S). The objective is to provide a greater range and quality of services to ambitious entrepreneurs who want to launch and grow companies focused on the Internet of Things and Services (IoTS). H2020 project ICT-13: € 2,036,321
EU-XCEL, an European Virtual Accelerator will develop a network of ICT entrepreneurship creative physical and virtual spaces and coordinate European wide intensive entrepreneurial action training events called ‘Start-up Scrums’ between consortia members with international teams. The programme will cultivate a European entrepreneurial mind-set and pilot a ‘Born European Enterprise’ annual event. It is recognised that ICT enterprises take time to develop the technology. The proposal sets out to engage with 300 ICT students using an intensive training package over 4 months, starting with the ‘start-up Scrums’, continuing with virtual support via the EU Virtual Incubator and culminating with the best teams competing in the ‘Born European Enterprise Challenge’. A key element of the programme is student exchange as well as staff exchange, which will enable cross-fertilisation. H2020 project ICT-35: 1.791,219 €
YUZZ is more than a just contest for new entrepreneurs.
It offers you information, support and assessment, accompanying your needs along the development of your business plan.
All participants can win part of a total amount of 60,000 euros (1st prize, 30,000, 2nd prize 20,000, 3rd prize 10,000). From each centre, one person will be invited to visit Silicon Valley and there will be 80 full grants for the IMPULSA Forum .
In you have a technology-based innovative idea, you are between 18 and 30 years old, and live in a Spanish province where there is a YUZZ Centre, present your idea and allow us to tap your entrepreneurial spirit.